The Bupa Foundation awarded over £500,0000 to green projects at over 240 schools, not-for-profits and charities.
The money was raised as part of Bupa Global & UK’s Healthy Cities initiative which saw Bupa people, partners and customers collectively walk close to 1 billon steps in June.
To access the funding, local groups were encouraged to apply via the Bupa Foundation Green Community Grants programme. After an independent judging process, 241 applications were successful and will receive grants of up to £2,500 each.
The successful applicants include:
- 165 schools who will receive funding for outdoor classrooms, forest schools, sensory gardens and similar projects
- 76 community groups, charities and food banks for community allotments, parks, playgrounds and green space improvements
The grants will directly impact up to 70,000 people across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
The programme supports Bupa’s global ambition to support one million people to improve their health each year by 2025 through restoring and regenerating nature. It comes as Bupa research shows that two in five (38%) people in the UK spend less than an hour a day outdoors, with lack of access to green spaces having a knock-on effect on mental and physical health.
Time spent outdoors in green spaces has been shown to be hugely important to health and wellbeing. It helps boost mood and reduce stress levels, as well as encouraging people to be more active and feel connected with their local community. Increased quality of green spaces also benefits the environment too through reducing pollution, which has been linked to respiratory diseases, heart disease, and some cancers.
Stuart Brown, Chair of the Bupa Foundation, said: “People’s health and planet health are inextricably linked, which is why it’s essential that we work to increase access to nature and green spaces.
“We received over 1,000 applications for funding and the standard of applications made the judging process incredibly difficult. I’m pleased that the Bupa Foundation is able to fund so many fantastic projects around the country, living our purpose to help people live longer, healthier, happier lives and making a better world.”
The Bupa Foundation Green Community Grants Programme is administered by the national community charity, Groundwork.
Graham Duxbury, Groundwork’s UK Chief Executive, said: “We are delighted that schools and community groups up and down the UK are going to benefit from much-needed funding through our partnership with the Bupa Foundation. Now more than ever, it’s vital that support goes to the people and places that need it the most to ensure that communities can thrive. We look forward to seeing the on-going, positive impact that this funding will have.”